Man Investigated for Assaulting Traffic Officer

Police in Siem Reap City on Thursday questioned a traffic police officer over an incident on Tuesday in which the son-in-law of the Siem Reap provincial prison director allegedly punched the woman in the arm and threatened to run her over after she pulled him over, officials said.

Vann Vireak, deputy director of provincial traffic bureau, said the incident occurred on Tuesday afternoon when Siem Reap City traffic police officer Touch Mom, 24, tried to stop Lem Snekomnit for driving his 2015 Honda Dream motorbike without a helmet.

According to Mr. Vireak, Mr. Snekomnit had been driving around a traffic circle near the city’s Old Market, his wife riding pillion, when police spotted him and tried to flag him down.

“He drove around the traffic circle and then was directed to the woman’s road and tried to escape,” he said.

Ms. Mom then stepped in front of the motorbike, forcing Mr. Snekomnit to stop and step off the vehicle, Mr. Vireak said.

“First he hit the woman and then she ran toward his motorbike,” he said. “He followed her and hit her again.”

As other traffic police officers converged to assist Ms. Mom, Mr. Snekomnit and his wife got onto a moto-trailer and fled the scene, according to Mr. Vireak. He said Mr. Snekomnit then returned alone in his Toyota Camry and threatened to run over Ms. Mom.

“He came back again in his car and shouted to the woman through his window: ‘You, come and apologize to me now or I will hit you with my car,’” Mr. Vireak said. “Then the woman took her phone out to record [a video of] him, so he drove fast and ran away.”

Contacted Thursday, Ms. Mom said Mr. Snekomnit left bruises after he punched her twice in the upper right arm.

“I was just doing my job,” she said. “I filed two complaints against him: intentional violence and making a death threat.”

Provincial police chief Sort Nady said Thursday that officers were still interviewing Ms. Mom.

“When we finish, we will summon him,” he said.

Mr. Chhem Savuth, the prison director, could not be reached for comment.

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